New anticonvulsant drugs show promise in dogs, cats - DVM
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New anticonvulsant drugs show promise in dogs, cats


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Recent insights into the mechanisms of action of two of the new anticonvulsant drugs (gabapentin and levitiracetam) have generated developments of the next generation drugs with increased anticonvulsant potency.

The successor to gabapentin is pregabalin, which has greater affinity for the voltage-gated calcium channels than its predecessor. There are two successors to levitiracetam — brivaracetam and seletracetam — both of which have greater affinity for SV2A than levitiracetam.

Because of the problems of hepatotoxicity and blood dyscrasias occasionally associated with felbamate use in people, a new derivative of the drug, fluorofelbamate, has been developed. The substitution of fluorine for hydrogen in a critical place in the molecule is believed to prevent the formation of the toxic metabolite responsible for the reported side effects.

All of these drugs appear to have greater anticonvulsant activity in experimental rodent models than their predecessors. Pregabalin also has shown greater anticonvulsant efficacy than gabapentin in people. Brivaracetam, seletracetam and fluorofelbamate are in clinical trials. Pregabalin is commercially available, but the appropriate dose regimen for oral pregabalin in dogs is still unknown. dvm


Source: DVM360 MAGAZINE,
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